An international ice cricket
tournament has been played on Lake St. Moritz
Lake St. Moritz is a lake near St. Moritz, Switzerland. With a surface of 0.78 km², it is smaller than the main lakes of the Upper Engadin valley ....
since 1988 and now in Estonia every year since 2004. The inventor of the Estonian version is credited to Jason Barry, a British ex-pat and former Estonian cricket president who was determined to increase the visibility of Estonian cricket throughot the year.
The summer game of cricket
Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of 11 players on an oval-shaped field, at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard long pitch. One team bats, trying to score as many runs as possible while the other team bowls and fields, trying to dismiss the batsmen and thus limit the...
is applied to some of the harshest, most wintry conditions. The difference between Ice Cricket and other forms of cricket played in the winter is that Ice Cricket is played directly on the ice, no mat is laid down. The results are a little more unpredictable and provide more fun and variety.
The ball is the same as an indoor cricket ball
A cricket ball is a hard, solid leather ball used to play cricket. Constructed of cork and leather, a cricket ball is heavily regulated by cricket law at first class level...
, a composite plastic red ball which makes it relatively easy to find if it gets hit into a snowdrift.
The Ice Cricket World Championship is held annually in the Estonian city of Tallinn
Tallinn is the capital and largest city of Estonia. It occupies an area of with a population of 414,940. It is situated on the northern coast of the country, on the banks of the Gulf of Finland, south of Helsinki, east of Stockholm and west of Saint Petersburg. Tallinn's Old Town is in the list...
. With winter temperatures of minus 10 to minus 25, the tournaments are played on Harku boating lake, which freezes over rapidly in early January.
The rules for Ice Cricket are similar to six-a-side rules:
Wides count as two extra runs with no extra ball, with leniency given to the bowler as he finds it tough standing up most of the time.
Each team must bowl six overs which means everyone gets a go.
The competition itself depends on the number of teams taking part but the usual format is a Round Robin tournament with top teams progressing to semis and finals.
Teams can have a maximum of 10 players and a minimum of 6.
Also, the boundaries are either snow-banks or are patrolled by officials on ice skates, if you strike a skater an extra 6 runs is added to your score.